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The Climbing Club • View topic - Figure eight follow-through versus Yosemite bowline

The Climbing Club

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PostPosted: Thu Feb 18, 2010 8:53 pm 
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The Pub Czar
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PostPosted: Thu Feb 18, 2010 9:20 pm 
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A different option - figure of eight tied on a bight with locking carabiner? I've seen this done pretty often as well, how does it compare to bowline/biner?


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PostPosted: Thu Feb 18, 2010 9:41 pm 
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PostPosted: Thu Feb 18, 2010 9:48 pm 
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I think the advantage of the bowline on a bite with a biner is that you are actually tied into the rope with the biner ensuring the knot can't come untied, while the figure eight on a bite is clipped to a biner which is then clipped to your harness, adding one more point of failure to the system.

I asked this question because my parents bought me a copy of , in which the author strongly advocates tying in with the Yosemite bowline (check out pages 137-139 on the Google Book link), but he does seem to be a lone voice in the wilderness on this point. I think a key point is that he recommends the bowline with a Yosemite finish, which I think is critical. If it really is a superior knot (which I'm not convinced of) the argument that it shouldn't be used because people aren't familiar with it seems a weak one; after all, there was a time when none of us knew what a figure eight was.

All that being said, for now I think I'll stick with my trusty figure eight in critical situations and play with the Yosemite bowline on a sailboat.


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PostPosted: Thu Feb 18, 2010 11:16 pm 
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PostPosted: Sun Feb 21, 2010 8:04 pm 
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PostPosted: Sun Feb 21, 2010 10:58 pm 
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So for this retraced bowline you tie a regular bowline and use the tail to retrace the knot starting at the original bight? Do you retrace the entire knot, or just the bight? I couldn't seem to find a comprehensive description online.


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PostPosted: Mon Feb 22, 2010 10:04 pm 
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Awesome, thanks Veronika.


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PostPosted: Tue May 11, 2010 5:26 pm 
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PostPosted: Thu May 13, 2010 7:27 am 
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PostPosted: Fri May 14, 2010 6:10 pm 
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I do use the Double Bowline to tie the climbing rope to my harness. A Double Bowline is only slightly different than the standard Bowline. The difference being that while you're giving the story which guides you how to form and tie the knot, you place two coils of rope. The "rabbit" comes up from the ground through two coils of rope, or the "stage hand" comes out of the bar through two coils of rope, etc.

I then form a double overhand with the tail. This double overhand knot is tied around the bowline's primary load loop strand.

The tail from the double overhand is appropriately long. For round textiles the recommended tail length is 10 times the diameter of the textile. For flat textiles the recommended tail length is 6 times he width of the textile.

10mm ropes need 100mm tails, about 4 inches.
1-inch webbing needs 6-inch tails.

These recommendations are from the bible on all things rope, "On Rope" by Pagett.

Most of my partners also use the Double Bowline. Most use the Yosemite Finish rather than the Double Overhand. The Yos finish is where you take the tail and feed it back through the acute bight in the Bowline. Lee's original post had excellent pictures showing the Yosemite Finish to the Bowline.


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PostPosted: Wed Jun 23, 2010 4:35 pm 
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When I can get away with it, I like to tie in as shown in Lee's original post (single bowline with a Yosemite finish), but I additionally tie the tail to the standing part with a double overhand (like most people finish their retraced figure eights).

My favorite method for tying a single bowline starts with a simple flip of the bitter end around the standing part. In this case, a video is worth a thousand words.

Starting in this way avoids the need to futz around with properly orienting the "rabbit hole" and comes almost mindlessly to the hands -- poetry in motion.


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